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Rights group says gay man killed in South Africa


JOHANNESBURG -- A South African gay rights group says a young gay man was killed and his body mutilated in a hate crime.

Police say Thapelo Makutle was found dead early Saturday morning with his throat cut. The police say they are investigating the case as a murder and the motive is unknown.

But the spokeswoman for the gay rights group in northwestern South Africa, Jabu Pereira, said Thursday the killing was a hate crime. She says the perpetrators didn't steal anything and the body was mutilated. Pereira says the neighbors heard a commotion early Saturday morning and a close friend found Pereira under a blanket covered with blood.

She says the Makutle was an outspoken supporter of gay rights.

South Africa's constitution bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but gays here still face discrimination and violence.


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